SANGER — Five years of firsts came to an end for four Krum seniors in Tuesday night’s Class 3A Region II quarterfinal match at Sanger High School.
Decatur’s No. 3 Lady Eagles (43-3) dealt a lopsided end of the line for the four Lady Cat seniors who were around for their program’s inception as eighth-graders in 2008.
“It’s been real neat to be the [program’s] first seniors,” Krum middle blocker Ashleye Adkins said after Decatur’s 25-12, 25-17, 25-12 win, speaking for teammates Cheyanne Bullock, Justice Dominguez and Kim Robinson. “It was a real good run for us.
“I felt like my team and I have accomplished a lot since the eighth grade. We’ve come a long way.”
The group that began under the tutelage of middle school coach Dale Metcalf finished with a 29-15 record for varsity coach Stacey Lucas in 2012, reaching the third round of the playoffs for the second time in as many seasons of UIL district membership.
“Last year was our first time to play in a district and we ended up area champs in Class 2A,” Lucas said. “This year they moved us up to 3A and our goal was just to make the playoffs. They went past that and were area champs again in 3A.”
Unbeaten this season by 3A competition, Decatur advanced to this weekend’s Region II tournament at Mesquite Poteet. In pounding out their third straight three-set sweep of District 9-3A runner-up Krum, the 9-3A champion Lady Eagles showed off a deep and talented team that Lucas and the younger Lady Cats can set to copy as a future goal.
“Decatur is a seasoned 3A team used to going deep in the playoffs. They’re a hurdle we haven’t quite been able to get past,” Lucas said. “It didn’t matter where we put the ball. They could hit it from anywhere on the court.”
Sophomore lefty Cooper Martin led the Lady Eagles with seven kills and logged 18 service points, including 11 in a row in one third-set stretch.
Adkins led Krum with eight kills and two blocks. Dominguez had six kills and Robinson and Machala Noack logged five apiece. Noack had 11 digs, and Ariana Buchanan and Rosa Rodriguez each had nine. Setters Paige Williams and Rodriguez had 12 and 10 assists, respectively.
Krum never led in the match. The only tie came at 2-2 in the second set. That set saw Krum put together four straight points — the only time all night the Lady Cats managed more than two points in a row — to get within 10-8 as Krum scored on Noack’s spike, a Dominguez ace and two errors by Decatur.
That set was still a two-point affair at 18-16 before Decatur scored seven of the final eight points.
Robinson’s cross-court kill had Krum within two points at 6-4 in the opening set before Decatur went on a 10-2 run for 16-6 lead. Krum never got closer than eight points the rest of the set.
The third set saw Robinson go cross-court again to pull Krum within 6-5, but a Krum serving error made it 7-5 and gave serve to Martin. Five of her 11 straight service points came on serves Krum didn’t return. It was 18-5 before Dominguez won a side-out with a kill for Krum.